products What is a sun care product?

A sun care product is a preparation (e.g. a cream, oil or lotion) formulated for direct application to the skin. Its specific or primary aim is to protect skin against the sun by absorbing, dispersing or reflecting UV rays

What does a tube of Avène sun cream contain?

Sensitive skin specialists at Avène Dermatological Laboratories have poured their knowledge
and expertise into producing high quality sun protection that offers efficacy,
skin tolerance and also cosmetic appeal.

UV filters

A UV filter is an organic compound or mineral that absorbs or reflects UV rays emitted by the sun to protect the skin from their harmful effects.


These include various different agents that give the product its specific consistency.


These are molecules that prevent the skin from dehydrating by maintaining a healthy natural film.


Thanks to its soothing and anti-irritating properties, Avène Thermal Spring Water calms ravaged skin.

AVENE sun protection

Avène photoprotective products offer effective, broad-spectrum protection thanks to an exclusive triple complex of active ingredients: SunSitive® protection, a product of Pierre Fabre Research.

50 +SPF


Broad-spectrum UVB-UVA protection Photostable, water resistant


Prolonged release, photostable

Rich in Avène
Thermal Spring Water

Soothing, anti-irritating

Sun filters

An optimized filter system composed of a minimum of filters
with lasting stability and efficacy, offering the best short
and long UVB-UVA protection.

Anti-free radical protection

Solar radiation generates free radicals which
are responsible for damaging the skin.

Pre-tocopheryl (a powerful anti-oxidant and precursor of extended-release vitamin E), captures free radicals and protects the skin from oxidative stress.

The benefits of pre-tocopheryl

Acts at the heart of the cell

Transforms into Vitamin E in cells

Extended release depending on the skin's needs

rich in Avène Thermal Spring Water

A number of studies conducted on Avène Thermal Spring Water have produced remarkable results that have been published in international scientific journals:

  • - Respects the physiology of sensitive skin: the skin's balance is maintained: the skin's balance is maintained.
  • - Reduces the skin's reactivity: skin no longer reacts excessively.
  • - Strengthens the cells' natural resistance: boosts skin's natural defenses.

adapted sun care products

Avène Dermatological Laboratories offer sun care products that have been adapted according to skin type and sensitivity.
All levels of sensitivity: An orange range for sensitive skin, a white range for intolerant skin with chemical filters and fragrance.
All types of skin.

Dry touch, powder finish

The sun care emulsion leaves a matte finish on combination and oily skin thanks to a mattifying complex and the unique combination of sebum-regulating Monolaurin, mattifying powders, and an oil-free texture.

Skin comfort

Sun cream for dry skin, offers comfort and hydration thanks to its rich and creamy texture. Transparent when applied, it protects and hydrates sensitive dry skin.

Even skin tone

The tinted sun care range contains colored pigments that illuminate the complexion for a natural glow.

How can you tell if a sun care product is effective?

Sun protection is a public health issue.
It requires the formulation and development of effective products guaranteed
to produce the desired effects. Sun care products are described in Annex II
of the European Union Cosmetics Directive 76/768/EEC. This means they are classified
as entirely cosmetic products.
Photoprotective products are subject to specific regulations which are found in most
countries around the world (Europe, United States, Japan and Korea).

1Evaluation of SPF index (UVB)

Sun care products are tested using a unique methodology recommended by both national bodies (FDA in the US) and international associations (Cosmetics Europe for Europe).

SPF mainly concerns UVB protection. SPF is calculated by exposing healthy volunteers to artificial sources of UV light to reproduce the effects of sun exposure. The index is calculated by measuring the smallest dose of solar (or simulated) radiation needed to cause erythema 24 hours after the individual has been exposed: this is known as the Minimal Erythema Dose (MED).

The UVB protection factor is then calculated by comparing the doses of radiation required to produce pigmentation with and without sun protection

It should be noted that the SPF calculated is only a theoretical value as other parameters can also have an effect (open air application, the quantity of product applied etc.).


MED necessary
for protected skin
to turn red.

MED necessary
for unprotected
skin to turn red.

*Conditions of use for the product being tested:
- Surface covered: >35cm²
- Quantity applied 2mg/cm²
- Method of distributing the product
- Dose of radiation

2Evaluation of UVA index

There are two methods for calculating the UVA protection index.
The PPD method (Persistent Pigment Darkening). The pigmentation caused by UVA radiation after 2 hours of exposure is evaluated. UVA protection factor is calculated by comparing the doses of radiation required to produce pigmentation with and without sun protection.

The second method is an in-vitro test based on measuring the penetration of UVA through a sun care product applied to a tray before and after exposure to a dose of UVA radiation.
The European Commission prefers the in-vitro method which produces equivalent results.

Sun care products must respect a ratio: SPF/UVA index

SPF/UVA index < 3

The presence of this logo on product labeling certifies effective UVA protection

3Evaluation of water resistance

Water resistance is an important factor when it comes to choosing sun protection.
It is evaluated using a standardized method based on comparing SPF before bathing and after being immersed in water for a certain length of time.

- Determining the initial SPF.
- Immersion in a swimming pool for 20 minutes at a temperature of 23-32°C. This is repeated 2 or 4 times with 15 minutes' drying time in between sessions. No UV exposure.
- Exposure of the area tested and protected areas that were not tested

- Calculation of the results in terms of the percentage of initial SPF preserved
› SPF > 50% after 2 immersions: «water resistant» product.
› SPF > 50% after 4 immersions: «very water resistant» product.


Avène sun care products are proven to protect against damage caused by the sun's rays (DNA lesions, apoptosis of keratinocytes, cytotoxicity etc.).

The exclusive combination of active ingredients forms a unique complex composed of a minimum of UV filters with lasting stability, a powerful anti-oxidant and Avène Thermal Spring Water. This complex protects against UVA and UVB rays effectively.

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